I know, right?
Here is what the preliminary readers have had to say so far, about the first chapter:
This excerpt has beautiful writing with a fascinating setting, and lovely use of language that immediately compels the reader to want to learn more about this tiny island. It captures the sense of a soon-to-be-lost world and elicits a preemptive nostalgia for what once was, even though it hasn’t yet been lost. I would definitely want to read more of this story.And:
I enjoyed this story. I was actually a little disappointed when I found myself at the end of the excerpt, I would have definitely liked to have kept reading. I think the plot has great potential, the characters are engaging and well rounded and the writing is top notch. It's a great story.Oh, and here's what a totally unsolicited reader had to say about the first chapter, which is now available for Kindle:
A traditional story of families and generational upkeep takes on a new slant with this book's unique setting, the remote Hebrides Islands off Scotland. From the outset, the location is beautifully drawn, and the story set in motion, told in descriptive passages and symbolically through the characters. The author has a great knack for "showing" the story, at a steady pace, and letting the reader develop their own thoughts... An elegantly written excerpt that flows nicely from scene to scene. I'd like to read more.Guys. The semifinalists are announced on April 24th, and they're chosen based on the reviews that Publisher's Weekly is now writing about the remaining entries — but YOU and ALL YOUR FRIENDS should still go read the first chapter and tell the internet how awesome you think it is. In exchange, once I start hobnobbing with Franzen at swanky NYC literary events, I will totally ask him if he'll go out with you.